Trails have played an integral role in the history of Kansas City, Missouri. From the Lewis and Clark expedition along the Missouri River to the convergence of the historic Santa Fe, Oregon and California trails in Kansas City, trails have influenced the development of our city. Today, trails are recognized locally and throughout the nation as effective tools that help shape communities and create the quality of life that attracts and retains residents and businesses.
The Trails KC Plan is the City of Kansas City, Missouri’s vision for developing a first-class shared-use trail system for pedestrians, bicyclists, and equestrians, for both commuting and recreation. Trails are recognized locally and throughout the country as effective tools to create strong, vibrant communities and create the quality of life that attracts and retains residents and businesses.
To date, the City has built more than 60 miles of trails throughout the city. The Trails KC plan identifies 297 miles of trails which include shared-use, on-street, and equestrian facilities. The Trails KC system consists of a hierarchy of trails. At the top of this hierarchy are the primary or regional “citywide trails.” A combination of minor trails and connectors work to support the regional citywide trails. These include:
- Citywide trails - a public, non-motorized, shared-use trail facility that servesas a primary or regional trail.
- On-street connectors – a combination of on-street bicycle facilities (bike lanes, shared lane markings, bike routes, etc) and sidewalks. On-street connectors are only identified as part of the Trails KC system where off-street, shared-use trails are not feasible.
- Equestrian trails – public equestrian facilities in corridors adjacent to Citywide Trails.
- Neighborhood connector trails – public, non-motorized, shared-use “local” trails that connect neighborhoods to the regional Citywide Trails. The Plan does not identify the locations of proposed neighborhood connectors, but does include criteria for their development to ensure effective connectivity throughout the city.
- Bike KC routes – while not a part of the Trails KC Plan, the on-street bike facilities identified in the City’s adopted Bike KC Plan will work in tandem with the Citywide Trails routes to provide an integrated off-street/on-street bicycle system for Kansas City.